The mention of UFC usually evokes images of fisticuffs, blood and ringside mayhem. Dustin Poirier would like to change that narrative.
No doubt he still does all of the above – witness his knockout of infamous mixed martial artist Conor McGregor over the weekend.
But he has something else going on in his hometown of Lafayette, Louisiana that serves as a perfect counterbalance.
Poirier and his wife, Jolie, are auctioning off the shorts, jackets and wraps that Poirier has used in dozens of his fights. Profits from the memorabilia are funneled into a nonprofit called “The Good Fight Foundation,” dedicated to helping underserved communities in their local Acadiana region.
His charitable efforts started innocently enough. As he was getting ready to move, Poirier came across boxes of memorabilia. Instead of throwing it away or dumping it into a storage unit, the couple began auctioning off items to raise money to donate to various causes in his hometown and surrounding region.
They’ve done some pretty cool things through the foundation, including building a playground for children with special needs and helping the family of a Lafayette police officer who was shot and killed while on duty.
The foundation also donated 1,000 meals to hospital staff in Lafayette last Easter.
“There’s three major hospitals here in Lafayette,” Poirier told MMA Junkie’s Mike Bohn. “We want to feed every employee, doctors, nurses, at every hospital.”
And here’s a cool side story about the fight. Before they squared off, McGregor promised Poirier that he would make a donation to the cause. He did – before the fight – for $500,000.
“I don’t want to make it seem like we’re up here giving each other back massages but Conor, I just want to clear the air: Conor’s team, McGregor Sport & Entertainment, did reach out to my foundation and they are starting the process toward that donation,” Poirier told reporters at the UFC 257. “So Conor, man-to-man, you’re going to help a lot of people with that.”